02 June 2015

What's a £1 coin worth?

Can a £1 coin be worth £10,000? Jason File spent his £5,000 grant, or rather £4,999 of it, marketing and publicising his show - of a £1 coin. Around the walls are invoices, in the centre is The Coin. Add an art-world markup of 50%... and you've got another example of the emperor's new clothes, an illustration of the arbitrary workings of the art commodity market.

"This thought-provoking exhibition stands alongside all those who’ve ever questioned how an unmade bed or a bunch of spots could be worth so much money. Ironically, on the flipside of the coin, those same people may be angered by File’s artwork. Poking fun at the art world while stimulating an intellectual debate on the value of art is what makes this is a brilliant exhibition" says
The Londonist.

The video of the introduction to the exhibition talks about "the transparency of making art work" and "what is at stake in the construction of the work" - the possibility of the production of meaning in an object. The idea resides in the concept of the work, not the work itself. Consider the interconnections, things that might be invisible - and the value of what is being offered, and the afterlife of art: the value of cultural capital.  It also links this show to Hans Haacke's "Gift Horse" on the fourth plinth.

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